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Yomego Eircom

Yomego launches football networking site Soccer Republic

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By The Drum Team, Editorial

March 23, 2009 | 4 min read

Irish telecom service provider, Eircom, has teamed up with social media agency Yomego to launch Soccer Republic.

Positioned as ‘the new home of Irish soccer’, Soccer Republic is a new ‘interaction rich’ website aimed at supporters of the Republic of Ireland football squad.

Yomego secured the contract to design, develop and build the new site following a competitive pitch last November.

Soccer Republic’s full launch this week coincides with the announcement of the Irish squad for two upcoming World Cup qualifiers, taking on Bulgaria on the 28 March and Italy on the 1 April.

Alongside news feeds, the site provides fans with exclusive behind-the-scenes footage and access to the team’s players, management and backroom staff. Soccer Republic also provides fans with their own social networking platform – the Fanzone – giving them the chance to meet, upload, share comment on and rate content, chat and join Groups.

Michael Kennedy, marketing director at Eircom, the lead sponsor of the national soccer team, explains: “Soccer Republic is designed to bring fans closer to the national team, its players and management set-up. The site has all the bells and whistles of a contemporary social network and gives fans the opportunity to view and deliver content, and drive its popularity. The plan here is to build a vibrant and engaging digital community and provide a raft of extra benefits and incentives exclusively for eircom customers.

“Ireland fans are being challenged to swear their allegiance by our ATL launch by registering on the site. Once there, fans will be able to discuss every bump on the road to the World Cup Finals in South Africa. We’re offering money-can’t-buy prizes to those who get involved – like two seats on the team plane to Bari in Italy – and we’re actively encouraging users to give us open and honest feedback on what they like and dislike about the site. Future development of the site will be democratised, and we’re determined to stay true to the original plan; to develop a site for the fans, by the fans.”

Steve Richards, Managing Director of Yomego, said: “It’s been great to work with a brave client like eircom to develop a site which is a signpost towards the future of social networking for brands.

“Eircom have understood from day one that fans will only accept branded social media if it’s on their terms. Soccer Republic provides fans with an inside insight on the team and leading lights from behind the scenes. As lead sponsors, eircom are facilitating this access, and bolting on some extra bonuses exclusively for their customers.

“This is a far cry from ‘make my logo bigger’ corporate sponsorship. eircom is inviting fans to take control of the site and become stakeholders in its future development. This open and honest approach to branded social media is paying off for brands like Coke and General Motors in the US. We’ve worked very closely with eircom to reset the standard for customer engagement by building the world’s most entertaining and interactive fans’ site.”

Yomego Eircom

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